Monday 28 September, 2020

Local horsemen shocked and angry about Pitons Cup exclusion

Surprised, angry and dejected.

That’s exactly how horsemen around the island felt after they were told that local horse races were not on the agenda of the list of activities for what has been dubbed the “Caribbean richest race in 2019,” the Pitons Cup, which will be held on December 13, 2019, Saint Lucia’s National Day.

They received the bad news from Jeshuren Andrew, president of the National Equine, Welfare and Sporting Association, at a meeting he held with them at the NAP office in Vieux-Fort last Saturday.

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“The agenda of the day will not include local races,” Andrew told the horsemen, which caught many of them by surprise.

He said that he tried his best to have the Royal Saint Lucia Turf Club accommodate them but to no avail.

“We asked them to use their track, they said “no,” we asked them to use their equipment, they said “no,” we asked them to use their trainers, they said “no,” Andrew said.

He added that when he asked them why they would not be allowed to use their facilities, they said it was just not allowed.

The horsemen were also informed at the meeting that they would have to promote their own race.

According to Andrew, he had difficulties contacting the director of the Royal Saint Lucia Turf Club, Eden Harrington, to discuss certain matters.

At the meeting, the horsemen expressed surprise that they were informed of the situation so late and wondered whether it was done deliberately.

Some of them said that they were not too surprised to learn that their horses will not race on December 13.

“The track is on our land, but it is not ours,” a horseman said at the meeting.

According to the irate horsemen, in an interview with Loop News, their hopes of having their horses take part in any race on the newly built horse track has now been dashed.

“We are very angry. We were fooled,” a horseman told Loop News on condition of anonymity, adding that he had already spent money in preparing his horse for the race.

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